Interaction Design: Physical Digital Products - Team Assignments and Brainstorming

Following a presentation of the ICON article, we were asked to make notes on everyone else's topics to watch for correlations between our research topics in the hopes of finding and creating groups of 3 based on common interest while making sure no group had 3 interaction designers or 3 product designers. Dubbing my research as 'Touch Technology' I agreed to work with two girls from Product Design who's topics of research had been 'Emotion in Design' and 'Alternative Communication'. With our group decided we immediately began our reading week with brainstorming ideas based on the idea of Emotion in Design.

With that as our focus, we began to explore a broad spectrum of options that we could pursue. We eventually narrowed it to topics such as parent-child relationships, premature babies, friendships and reactive objects.

The refined topics helped us expand on our current ideas and gave us a lot of different ideas as well as interesting ways to approach the brief. The only problem was trying to keep the project related to whispering without simply tacking it on at the end to make the the product relevant. At this stage ideas considered included gloves that used heat as a form of notifying the wearer if a parent had sent their child money (a concept that derived from each of us experiencing this at some point during our time at university). Another idea was to create a device that allowed a parent to whisper to their premature child, referring to studies that parent's voice can help stimulate growth and bonding with their child.

Our brainstorming took one final iterations before we came to the agreement on our final design - adapting the idea of product for a premature baby, we instead opted to design a product that could whisper to a child from the parent's workplace. This stemmed from considering how parents that have to return to work early for financial reasons continue to find that way to bond with their child.